Ryan Diesem

The Ryan Report

Home Oxygen Guru – The HO2G Pen

Oxygen Users Tips Shared

Oxygen users on a recent Sea Puffer cruise had the opportunity to interact with Ryan and ask all the questions they had about using oxygen. Everyone came away with a better understanding of living with lung disease.

When using your oxygen during a flight and you are lucky enough to have a plug at your seat to plug your portable oxygen concentrator into, take the battery out of the unit. The cabin is pressurized to 8,000 feet. The oxygen density is almost 30 percent less than at sea level. Be sure to have your oximeter with you and don’t even think about walking around the plane without your oxygen!

Using the POC with the battery installed will pull more power from the plane than if the battery is kept out of the unit while plugged in. The power on the plane often fluctuates.


(L-r) Ryan, Holly and Celeste with Jeri Mondloch; all agree it takes a village to raise an oxygen user!

Removing a fully charged battery from your POC while plugged into the power outlet of your car will lessen your risk of any electrical issues popping up (like a blown fuse) due to the POC’s power needs.

People resented that they were seen as being on death’s door because they use oxygen. Just like wearing glasses to make our eyes work better, why is it different when we use oxygen to help our lungs work better?

It is hoped that the future will bring an oxygen system that will put you back to a normal state. Many people were given POCs by their home care companies that simply did not meet their needs. Everyone absolutely has to be their own advocate and we need to stick together!

Ryan stressed that using your oxygen will increase your activity endurance and survival rates. It is not easy to decipher the difference between the POCs on the market today, and (L-r) Ryan, Holly and Celeste with Jeri Mondloch; all agree it takes a village to raise an oxygen user!

image070-1the seventh annual POC comparison chart that appeared in our last issue was discussed at length. The amount of oxygen you get from one POC is different than another, even though they are set at the same setting – and a setting of 2 is not the same as 2 liters per minute that you get out of a tank of oxygen. Some deliver the same amount of oxygen with every breath you take and others can only deliver a set amount per minute, so when your respiratory rate increases, the amount of oxygen that is delivered with each breath is decreased.

Ryan brought out the Clinical Oxygen Dose Recorder (CODR) which is a device that is connected between your cannula and your portable oxygen to measure many parameters including your oxygen saturation, heart rate, and amount of oxygen you are receiving. We were able to watch real time monitoring as the oxygen user walked out of the room. When one lady’s oxygen saturation significantly dropped almost immediately, she tried another company’s POC and then borrowed a liquid oxygen portable from another user and we saw much improvement in her ability to maintain her oxygen saturation.

Titrate to saturate! Titrating means to experiment with your oxygen flow rate by turning it up and down when you are active to see what you need to set it at to be reasonably comfortable. People were surprised that it was perfectly acceptable to turn their flow from 2 to 6 while active and then turning it back down when  at rest.

image071-2The Inogen® G4 is  one of the lightest POCs on the market but its oxygen output is much less and the battery life is much shorter than the Inogen® G3. The Respironics Simply Go is a continuous flow POC that goes up to a setting of 2. It is 10 to 12 lbs. and goes up and also has pulse settings of 1 to It cannot go higher than a setting of 2 on continuous. The larger POCs, as the Sequal Eclipse, Equinox and the OxyLife Independence, are the most powerful going to 3 continuous flow and delivering large amounts of oxygen on the pulse settings. Find the one that is right for you and don’t settle for less!

We had the opportunity to try two new POCs, called Zen-O and Zen-O lite, from a company called GCE (Gas Control Equipment). The six pound Zen-O lite delivers up to 1050 ml of oxygen per minute which is pulse mode with settings from 1 to 5. The ten pound Zen-O delivers continuous flow oxygen up to a setting of 2 and pulse dose settings up to 6.

The primary factor to consider when looking at a POC is whether it can help you maintain adequate oxygenation whenever you are using it. Getting a POC that can’t give you enough oxygen is not helpful at all.


Ryan Diesem is Research Manager at Valley Inspired Products, Apple Valley, MN. Contact Ryan at [email protected] com with questions or comments.